Friday, 18 December 2015

C17 Pylons #2

Well, I don't know what happened there, but my source plan was WAY out when it came to the pylon shape.  I have remodelled them to the correct shape, and adjusted the position of the engines.
I also re-did some of the formers around the fuselage join, after learning some lessons on the A10 in this area.  The top of the fuselage in this area will be for the receiver and it's switches, and also access to the tensioner for the fuselage join.

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Building board changes

After hearing so much about using plaster-board to build on, I got a 5 foot x 3 foot panel from B&Q last night (only £6!).  This coincided with a big bench clean up, as I had visited the venerable Matt Jones on Sunday to pick up some large white foam panels for the C17.

To say that his workspace is neat and clean is an understatement!  So here is my attempt :

Looks ok I think, and nice and flat.  So, one thing to do - get the Sea Hawk on it!  Pinned down and levelled-up :

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

C17 pylons

I modelled up a generic pylon that should suit both inner and outer stations.  These will have to be really stiff, as I will make them permanently mounted to the wings, then the engines will be magnetized to the pylons.  I think perhaps 1/8" ply either side of a 5/8" balsa core.

Then here is a frontal view for a bit of model porn!

Monday, 14 December 2015

C17 Engines etc..

Today's progress covers the fin-top area, and the engines.  These will each be 3D printed from 3 pieces, then joined together to produce the shape seen here.

The fin-top will be quite a structural piece, joining the one-piece tailplane to the top of the fin via 2 steel socket cap head screws and 2 dowels for location.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Back to the Sea Hawk..

So, the Flanker is sat there ready for glassing, and I have everything around me to get on with it.  I just can't be bothered as yet, as I really do have a LOT of time before the PSSA events commence, even if I do go flying in January / February, I can still get her done for then.

Anyway, on with the Sea Hawk.  I've now made a lovely little planked boat!

I sealed off the underside last night, and decided to crack on with the arrangements in through the top.  First of which is the elevator and rudder controls.  Yes a rudder.  If you fly without a rudder on a aeroplane that was meant to have one, you should be shot.

Not much going on in that shot, but it's interesting to see how curvy she is for something with such a small span.  So, I have started to prepare a bowden cable for the elevator, and haven't really thought about rudder control as yet.  Probably bowden again, as I have lots of it around the workshop.

Gratuitous plan shot!  Yes I still keep a Sea Hawk plan on the wall for me to sketch notes and modifications on to, in case I make another.  Ooh - B24 fuselage photo bomb there on the right!

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

C17 modelling, part 2

Here's a picture of some former tweaks that I've been working on tonight.  Some more reinforcement around the landing gear pods (to be used for launching and..well...landing on).

C17 mass build!

OK, not quite a mass build (thankfully!) but no sooner had I posted my intention and a picture of the design onto Facebook, a fellow PSS'er jumped in to say could I cut him a set of formers and a wing.

I will get my first one a little way into the build to iron out prototype problems first though, then cut him all the bits.  The builder of said 2nd C17 - David Gilder.  Nice one Dave!

Friday, 4 December 2015

2016 builds - final version.

OK so this is what I am planning my building time on for next year...with a surprise..

  • Finish the Flanker - just needs tailcones sorting, then glass and spray.  4 weeks work.
  • Finish the Sea Hawk - cut wings, finish fuz planking, make tail set. Glass and spray.  5 weeks work.
  • Build 3x L59 (or L39? can never remember) for sales. 3 weeks work.
  • Build Folland Gnat. 6 weeks work.
  • Build a new project that I've been designing this week.  15 weeks work.

So that new project then. Meet the Big Grey Cloud :

Yes, a 3.4m wingspan, 3.3m long, 1/15th scale C17 Globemaster.
It will be a "quick and cheap" structure - cheap 4mm ply for the formers and crutches, blocked out with white foam then carved to shape.  Finished with brown paper and PVA, glassed where necessary, and blue foam in the nose and front of undercarriage pods probably.  

I will cut the wings and veneer them myself as usual, and they will be covered with with Solarfilm or brown paper.  I will 3D print the engines to make them light, cheap, and strong, and I might 3D print the winglets too.

I plan on splitting the fuselage just behind the wing root, and the tailplane (all 1500mm of it!) will also be removable.  The main wing spar will be 25mm square steel, as per the A10 - its way over-specced, but cheap and easy to use.  I may splash out on proper FighterAces wing joiners for the fuselage joint again, unless I find anything suitable in the mean time.

Here is my model, with an (odd) human alongside for scale :

Aint she pretty?!  Work will start in January, with an aim to getting it done for the first PSSA meet, but definitely ready for the second.

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Flanker balsa bashing done

I did the intake blanks last night, so that's it - nothing more to cut.  I started this on the 18th of October, so not too bad - 6 weeks of building to get to the glassing stage.  Now..Ronseal (aka PolyC) or epoxy?

Not sure on that, I have consulted The Elders. Hehe.

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Flanker bits

OK enough ranting.  I think I don't have any balsa left to cut for the Flanker.  Here are the ailerons taped-on, with the tailset mounted too.  All the wiggly bits had a final sanding last night, and hinge points added ready for when the primer is on.

The wing tips have had the 1/16th inch ply end plates added to stiffen things up, and also hold the removable missile rails.

Fus is now 95% sanded.  Balls - just remembered that I have to finish off the area around the intakes.  Blanking, and a bit of tweaking on the separation to the underside, and then that's it for balsa bashing.


First post for December - soapbox edition

Welcome to December!  This year has gone quick, but it was just over a year ago (by two weeks) that I picked up a pile of formers, a carbon tube, some plastic bits and a set of foam wings for an amount of cash that has previously bought me a Pike WR (with servos)!

Doesn't seem fair really, as the Pike has - and will - get a lot more air time than the Hog ever will, but then F3F-shaped aircraft are two-a-penny.  Actually probably more like 4-a-penny.  They all look the same to me - elliptical tips / skinny fuselage / vee-tail.  It really does look like they all came from the same mold, and if they were all the same colour, I bet most people would struggle to tell the difference between any of them.  To me, the only one that stands out is the old Elita.  I'd seen one once, and loved it - such a refreshing shape with that keel under the fus.

I'm feeling suddenly nostalgic.  Here is a picture of the keel area of an Elita.

And a pic from KNewt's site.  Oh look, a cruciform tail.
(If anyone has one for sale, or wants to swap for a Pike WR (carbon fus / carbon d-box), I am interested)

Yes they all look the same, and yes, fliers of the type tend to just fly fast looping circuits in front of themselves ALL DAMN DAY ("I'm practicing" - for what? being a boring knob?), but these aircraft really do instil confidence when you chuck them off the edge in ANY sort of wind.  They will just work, and work very well. Obviously capable, but just so boring.

Which makes the price of a Hog (I stopped adding up the column on the spreadsheet when I got over £850..before it was painted) sort-of-worth it.  Yes, it needs specific conditions, but bejasus - it has character and presence, something another moulded clone will always fail to have.

And if someone asks me again "why don't you just put turbines in it", I will stick the nose section up their arse, blunt end first.